Objective: To assess the influence of racial and economic residential segregation of home or hospital neighborhood on very preterm birth morbidity and mortality in neonates born very preterm.
Study design: We constructed a retrospective cohort of n = 6461 infants born <32 weeks using 2010-2014 New York City vital statistics-hospital data. We calculated racial and economic Index of Concentration at the Extremes for home and hospital neighborhoods. Neonatal mortality and morbidity was defined as death and/or severe neonatal morbidity. We estimated relative risks for Index of Concentration at the Extremes measures and neonatal mortality and morbidity using log binomial regression and the risk-adjusted contribution of delivery hospital using Fairlie decomposition.
Results: Infants whose mothers live in neighborhoods with the greatest relative concentration of Black residents had a 1.6 times greater risk of neonatal mortality and morbidity than those with the greatest relative concentration of White residents (95% CI 1.2-2.1). Delivery hospital explained more than one-half of neighborhood differences. Infants with both home and hospital in high-concentration Black neighborhoods had a 38% adjusted risk of neonatal mortality and morbidity compared with 25% of those with both home and hospital high-concentration White neighborhoods (P = .045).
Conclusions: Structural racism influences very preterm birth neonatal mortality and morbidity through both the home and hospital neighborhood. Quality improvement interventions should incorporate a framework that includes neighborhood context.
Keywords: NICU; hospital quality; preterm birth; structural racism.
Copyright © 2021 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.